Before I got into bodybuilding, I was a former tennis professional. Growing up, I trained in the gym all the time as a part of my training for tennis. I always loved training in the gym… sometimes more so than being on the tennis court. That was the part of training I enjoyed the most throughout my tennis career. After having to retire competing in tennis, I started coaching and training young juniors and to this day, I still do that. However, three years ago, I was at my lowest with regard to my health and fitness level. Starting up my tennis academy consumed all of my time and efforts and I neglected myself to a point where I was literally 30+lbs overweight. Yikes!!! I was the biggest I have been in my life. I was not at my best and I needed to make a change and start getting back to taking care of myself. For most of my life, I was always active and being inactive for 2 years straight took its toll on me mentally and physically. Thankfully, I chose to hire a trainer to force myself to be accountable to showing up at least 4 days a week to train. In April of 2009, I competed in my first show at the Emerald Cup in the new Bikini Division. I was introduced to the sport when my trainer suggested I train for one. Before officially deciding, I went to the Emerald Cup in 2008 and was in awe of the amazing physiques. Seeing the competitor’s fearlessness and confidence portrayed on stage was refreshing to me. From a spectator’s view, I found it fascinating to see them practically naked, being thoroughly examined from head to toe and rather than be intimidated, they were fearless. Seeing how the audience was so supportive, I made the decision then and there to commit to doing a competition. I knew the training and diet was going to be hard however, the biggest challenge for me was overcoming the fear of being on that stage.
What keeps me motivated is the opportunity to compete at a high level. Training and competing has always been a huge part of the person I have become. When my competitive tennis career came to an end, I moved on to coaching and teaching, which fulfilled me partially but not completely. Don’t get me wrong, to this day, I enjoy developing and motivating young tennis players and seeing them grow and become empowered in the game however, before being introduced to bodybuilding, I was lost. It’s been a blessing to find a new sport, which has given me the opportunity to do what I love once again. Which is, to be DISCIPLINED, with a purpose and challenge myself everyday. Not only has it filled the gap, but also it has enriched me as a tennis coach, a sister, a wife, a friend etc. For example, my students get to witness what I preach to them everyday at practice, that hard work and dedication does pay off if you are patient and faithful. The results may not come immediately, but they will pay off eventually when it’s time. They are inspired by my discipline and know that what I say to them is real because I live it every day. I have been able to prove to them that anything is possible if you put your mind and heart into it and actually do it, no excuses!
To be honest… I am still figuring that out. I don't think there is one specific type that works best. My cardio changes all the time and I like that my trainers keep things changing. I believe that the intensity is what matters most and that is what works best for me.
My diet consists of all kinds of foods like chicken, fish, turkey, flank steak, salmon sweet potatoes, brown rice, spinach, carrots, strawberries, blueberries, apples, oatmeal, eggs, mushrooms…etc. Variety again is what I enjoy most about what my coaches implement in my diet. I appreciate that so much.
I know this may sound unrealistic, but I don't crave junk food or salty food. On occasion, I do crave chocolate but it's normally when my body is telling me I need more vitamin E and it's getting close to that time of the month. LOL!!! However, as far as junk food and salty foods are concerned, those cravings have not bothered me for quite some time. For me, eating clean has become a lifestyle and since I have been doing it for quite some time, the cravings for bad foods are no longer there. The longer you eat clean, the more resistant you become to bad foods.
I would have to say that Plyometrics are my #1 favorite exercise. I enjoy working shoulders a lot so dumbbell shoulder presses would be my second favorite and my third would be doing abs with regular and side planks. :)
It will vary… sometimes no rest at all, sometimes, 30 seconds, sometimes 45 seconds… sometimes a minute… it all depends on what my trainers plan for me that day. I just follow it completely with as much intensity I can muster.
If so what’s on your playlist right now? Yes I do… Can't do with out it!!!! Here's my top five on my current playlist now: Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F) Remix - Katy Perry & Missy Elliott Pumped up Kicks - Foster the People Tight Rope - Featuring Big Boi & Janelle Monae I Wanna Go - Britney Spears Moves like Jagger - Maroon 5 featuring Christina Aguilera
Click image below for weekly workout.
Yes, I set goals all the time. A few of them include:
1) Working on getting more exposure in the fitness community.
2) Continually improving my physique and having it show each time I step out on stage.
3) Have my 2012 competitions sponsored and paid for without my own personal funds.
4) Start my own online training program
5) Win a pro show and qualify for the Olympia.
6) Sign an endorsement contract with a GREAT nutritional company and other athletic gear brand that I align with as a brand.
7) Get published features in my favorite fitness magazines (IronMan Magazine, M&F Hers, Oxygen, FitnessRX,)
8) Land a national Cover in the US.
What I am most proud of is my choosing to change my lifestyle when I was at my lowest point with regard to my health. I made the change and I am not turning back. I feel and look younger than I have when I was in my college age days. I am mostly proud that my experience thus far has inspired and helped others to go after their fitness goals too. If I can do it, anyone can. No doubt about it. People can make the change at any time in their life. It is doable. It can be accomplished and there are so many of us that would be happy to help anyone make that change.
Yes, I have… who doesn't? But I believe it's a basic thing that we all have to experience many times in our lives, past, present and future. How else do we grow and become better people or better at what ever it is we that we do? I am truly grateful for obstacles. I believe they have served as a means in helping me make the physical improvements and most importantly have made me stronger mentally. I hope to have more to overcome because that means I get to continue to get better. Bring it on!!!
I measure my progress by my continued motivation to want to continue to improve. I know I progress each day when I complete my workout and training. As an athlete, I look forward and keep going hard. I realize some days, I may not feel it but I make sure I work through it and finish. It satisfies me and that's progress.
My favorite athlete is Rafael Nadal. He is the most inspiring person I know. He works so hard every time he is on the tennis court when practicing or competing. His reputation as a fearless competitor proceeds him and he is respected amongst his opponents. Everyone who plays him knows that he will make you work to beat him. He is relentless…He is consistent… and He plays his HEART out. He is exceptional, yet humble in all that he does and even when he is at the top of his game, he always says that he strives to continue to learn and improve. I LOVE that about him.
Glutamine is big… I believe every person that trains needs this supplement in their diet.
1) Always make sure you train with intensity. Push yourself each day to go harder.
2) Be persistent. Complete all of your training no matter how tired you are. Follow your diet the way it’s meant to be followed. You will get stronger mentally and physically each time you follow through.
3) Be patient. The results will come. You may not see it right away, if you do #1 and #2, you won't be sorry!!! :)
STATS: Height: 5’7 Weight:130. Off season 135.
Follow me on twitter: Twitter.com/ANGELAHLEONG